Home Loan Buddy: Durham Company Helps Borrowers Fighting Mortgage Discrimination

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DUREM, North Carolina (WTVD) – More than 800 people nationwide have benefited from Home Lending Pal, including one Triangle couple buying a home for the first time.

Last May, the Sanders moved into a three-bedroom, three-bathroom dream home in Nightdale.

“This is just amazing,” said Wonsia Sanders. “This is the goal that we have always set for ourselves. So reaching it at such a young age is a tremendous achievement. “

They used Home Lending Pal to determine what they could afford.

Here’s how it works: People create an account on their website by providing their personal information, including a soft credit check. The site then gives buyers a price range within their budget and identifies potential lenders.

“Everyone can benefit from this,” said Jamison Sanders.

CEO Brian Young and co-founder Steve Better officially launched a black and Hispanic-owned venture in Durham during the pandemic last summer.

Young was inspired to found the company after his family nearly lost their home in Fayetteville during the 2008 subprime mortgage crisis.

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“Adjustable rate mortgages just caught us off guard with interest – if it could happen to us, I’m sure it could happen to many other people,” Young said.

According to Pew Research, the proportion of black homeowners has still not recovered since its 2003 peak of 49.4 percent.

These are the number of homeowners by race during the nationwide pandemic compared to 2019:

  • Whites: 74.5%, up 0.8%
  • Blacks: 44%, remains unchanged
  • Hispanics: 49 percent, up 1 percent
  • Asians: 59.5%, up 1.9%

The proportion of black homeowners has not changed since 2019, according to Pew Research.

“It’s one of the greatest means of increasing wealth, but our people don’t use it,” Young said.
And in some cases, it was disproportionately denied. According to the Bureau of Consumer Protection, black Americans are being denied home loans at higher rates than any other race or ethnicity.

Sixteen percent for black borrowers and 10.8% for Hispanic white borrowers. In contrast, the failure rate for such loans was 8.6% for Asian borrowers and 6.1% for non-Hispanic white borrowers.

Young said his company has created software that allows lenders to access a borrower’s financial information without revealing a person’s race, gender, or age.

The company says it removes discrimination prior to making a loan decision, giving couples like Sanders an equal chance of owning a piece of the American Dream.

“This is amazing. This is amazing. It is one of the best sensations in the world, ”said Jamison Sanders.

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